American Idol Results: 5 Become 4

Brooke White

The show kicks, or stumbles, off with a really bad tribute medley of Neil Diamond songs. They either end to take more time to practice the group numbers or just eliminate them all together. First out to the stage to learn his post Neil Diamond fate is Jason Castro who is safe for another week. Next to the stage is David Archuleta who is also safe and heads to the couches with Jason. After a preview the upcoming season of So You Think You Can Dance, David Cook takes the stage with Ryan. He is safe and we have all three boys moving on to next week. So that leaves Brook and Syesha in the bottom two. For once the viewers got it right. I thought that Brook would wiggle her way out again so I predicted Jason to be there instead, but thankfully I was wrong.

The girls are left to worry as Neil Diamond and Natasha Bedingfield take the stage. Natasha sings her single Pocket Full of Sunshine and totally embarrassed Archuleta when she ran over and gave him a hug after the song and told him that she would go to the prom with him. Audience calls were pretty uneventful until Simon’s first kiss (at the age of nine) calls and asks if her kiss was more memorable than Paula’s. Gotta love an uncomfortable Simon but he admits that Tara (the caller) was totally his first crush. Aww how cute. Neil Diamond takes the stage before the final results are given on the bottom two. After all is said and done Syesha is safe and Brook is going home. Good call America!

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April 30, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , . American Idol, reality tv, singing. Leave a comment.

American Idol: 5 Finalists Go Diamond

 

 

Ready for a little Neal Diamond? I hope so because the finalists will each be singing two of the legend’s hits.  After Carly’s surprising departure last week, some of the finalists better thank their lucky stars and bring their best this week. (cough-Brook-cough)

                                               

Jason Castro

Song 1: Forever in Blue Jeans

Overview: With his guitar back in his hands, Jason’s first song was him as he likes best.  The song was simple and soulful.  Nothing new but nothing bad – and ending with that spectacular smile of his doesn’t hurt.

Song 2: September Morn

Overview: Another slow song choice for Jason, and not an easy song to sing. He seemed to not be trying by the end of the song and almost didn’t sing the last note. 

Judges:

        R– Another ok performance

P– Took the same liberty on both songs

S– Don’t recognize you, no attempt to make it your own, forgettable

 

David Cook

Song 1: I’m Alive

Overview: This is a less famous Diamond song.  David sings the fast anthem with more emotion than he seems to have had in past weeks.  The song sounds professional and he played along on his electric guitar.

Song 2: All I Really Need to You

Overview: Now playing an acoustic guitar, Cook brings back the raspy yet strong vocals that viewers have fallen in love with. The song started slow and quite then built gradually into a sort oh new vue power ballad that showcased his vocal strength.  Another winner for Cook!

Judges:

R– Blazing, rocked the house

P– Already looking at the American Idol

S– First song ok, second song brilliant

 

Brook White

Song 1: I’m a believer

Overview: I love this song and it is one of the most famous Diamond written songs but Brook did not do it justice in my opinion.  Her voice sounded shaky and she looked like a deer in headlights standing perfectly still through the entire song. The song was entertaining enough and I’m sure it will win her some votes unfortunately.  

Song 2: I am I Said

Overview: At the piano and lyrics written on her hand brook takes on a tough song. She did a better than fair job with this song.  It was a lot better than her first with more personality and an overall better vocal performance.

Judges:

R– Nice job

P– Shows vulnerability

S– Hated the first song, second song is the Brook he likes

 

David Archuleta

Song 1: Sweet Caroline

Overview: David started out with a few uncharacteristically flat notes but he fixed the problem quickly. The song didn’t seem like a good fit for him but he did a good job with it but it was far from his best performance with some rushed moments and faltering notes.

Song 2: America

Overview: This was a predictable song choice here. Over all the song was good, but he had a voice crack and a couple off pitches. He did have a few great moments with a good key change and a strong ending.

Judges:

R– Another good performance

P– Voice so on point

S– Smart choice of song

 

Syesha Mercado

Song 1: Hello Again

Overview: Syesha had some of the same problems that David did.  She missed a few of the notes in the verse but she came strong when the pitch of the song goes up.  She also hit a few good high notes after the weak key change that the audience seemed to take a liking to.  Perhaps they will remember the high notes and forget issues.

Song 2: Thank the Lord for the Night Time

Overview: This retro song was a great fit for a shoeless Syesha who still had a few pitch problems but worked the stage and the crowd.  It was a good song choice and she ended the show on a high point.

Judges:

R– Finally realizing who you are

P– Beautiful voice on the first song, and the second was a true performance

S– A very good actress stroke singer, but may be in trouble tonight

 

Um perhaps Paula really is on something, she was giving Jason notes on a song that he didn’t sing yet and then said it was hard to write and listen at the same time… not sure what’s going on with that women.  Anyway, Diamond night was less than impressive.  I suppose I should make a lame joke about the value of diamonds plummeting or something but I can’t think of anything.  Tomorrows bottom two will be Jason and Syesha though I think that Brook deserves to be there just as much as the other too.  Stay tuned to see what happens tomorrow.

April 29, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , . American Idol, reality tv, singing. Leave a comment.

American Idol Results: 6 Become 5

 

The contestants begin the show singing a painful rendition of All I Ask of You from The Phantom of the Opera.  Some of the boys were off key and the girls sounded strained and squeaky. Andrew Lloyd Webber takes the stage with Ryan to talk with the judges about the differences between singing in the theater and pop singing.  He also pointed out Jason’s odd song choice once again. Time for the first of the eliminations and a word from the president and first lady, the first to the stage is or I should say are the Davids: Cook and Archuleta.  Both Davids are safe, of course, and head to the safety couch.

 

Idol has been taking time to catch up with Idol alumni.  Tamyra Gray is currently starring in Rent on Broadway.  Clay Aiken is starring in Spamalot. Simon and Clive Davis worked together to produce tonight’s performer Leona Lewis.  Her song has been blowing up on the radio lately and I can see why, it’s so catchy. Time for more eliminations and Syesha and Brook take the stage and I don’t know how, maybe pity. Brook is safe tonight and Syesha is in the bottom two. Carly and Jason take the stage to find out their results.  Jason is safe and Carly is in the bottom two. The bottom two definitely shows that this is NOT just a singing competition, it is a popularity contest.  Girls love Jason so he is safe and probably shouldn’t be. Brook got a huge pity vote and I think Carly is just too tattoed and real for the American Idol audience.  I’m not sure what the heck Syesha did wrong though… There is always one surprise week.

 

Both bottom two contestants are asked to perform their songs again before the results are revealed. In the end Carly has to go home and Syesha is barely safe to sing at least one more week. 

April 23, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , . American Idol, reality tv, singing. Leave a comment.

Lauren Sent Home from Rome

 

The contest is down to six girls and after Stacy Ann’s exit last week, the girls better shape up because no one is safe in these last few weeks. The top six arrive in Italy and Anya face planted while stepping off of the bus.  What a great way to start the trip.  The girls move into their new pad in Rome and it has its own pool and garden.  Fatima is sick and the other girls, except Anya who is nice and helpful, down her and say she doesn’t have what it takes. The girls tour Rome on Segways, there was a lot of falling, and get familiar with Italian fashion before their challenge.  They have to meet Guy Mattiolo and impress him with their style and walk.  The winner is Anya but the excitement is short lived because the girls have to film a Covergirl commercial in Italian. Anya was a train wreck, apparently walking and talking at the same time is too much for her.  Dominique and Italian did NOT mix; the director said that it sounded like Chinese.  Lauren froze and looked like a deer in headlights that recently had its leg’s broken.  Katarzyna was good but boring, at least she didn’t ruin an entire language.  Fatima did well and the director called her a goddess.  Whitney was forced and over the top.

 

Eliminations are going to be long and painful; there will be a lot of negatives for the panel to point out. The judges were very under whelmed by all the takes and said that if Fatima’s was the best then they were in for an interesting night.  They were all laughing at the bad Italian and the overly hoochiness that most of the girls portrayed. After seeing Lauren’s take Ms. J said nothing and wrote “hell to the no.” it was pretty bad. They thought that Katarzyna was the most natural.

 

Time for eliminations, the first girl given life for next week is Fatima quickly followed by Katarzyna and Anya.  Dominique didn’t impress the judges but did enough to get by.  Whitney and Lauren are the bottom two.  The judges think that Whitney is too phony and Lauren can’t hide her personality and can not act.  In the end Lauren is sent home even though she has taken really great pictures all season long.  So long…

April 23, 2008. Tags: , , , , . American Idol, reality tv, singing. Leave a comment.

American Idol: 6 Finalists Take on Andrew Lloyd Webber

 

This week the idols are going to take on songs written by the legendary Andrew Lloyd Webber who is known for his award winning musical compositions.  So why are pop idols even going to attempt not only musical theater, but some of the most difficult musical theater creations to sing. Perhaps you have heard of Evita, Sunset Boulevard, Cats, Joseph and the Technicolor Dream Coat, and The Phantom of the Opera.  This should be interesting; the top six will be pushed to their limits tonight.

                                               

Syesha Mercado

Song: One Rock and Roll Too Many –from Starlight Express

Overview: The song was a great choice for her because it has a jazzy edge.  She did a have few small pitch problems but she played to the crowd and brought the personality. She had a big finish and that should help her in the memories of the viewers.

Judges:

R– Best performance to date so far

P– Brought the house down

S– Very sexy, showed masses of personality

 

Jason Castro

Song: Memory – from Cats

Overview: Crazy song choice here; Jason has a lot to work against being that the song is sung by an old dying cat. I think that it was a good thing that he had never seen the musical before because he didn’t have any preconceived ideas about what the song was.  The performance was breathy and uniquely Jason.  It was not great but it was okay.

Judges:

        R– Vocal train wreck, too big of a song 

P– Good choice and you put your influence on it

S– Like you were a young guy singing at a wedding that his parents forced him to sing

 

Brook White

Song: You Must Love Me – from Evita

Overview: This is a big song and has been performed by some big artists in the past so Brook has some large shoes to fill.  She messed it all up when she stopped during the second line of the song and restarted.  She sang the song on pitch and had the feeling behind the song but she didn’t sustain any of the big notes; something that is a must in musical theater. She did a decent enough job but restarting is really going to hurt her; she said that she “lost the lyric”. 

Judges:

        R– Wasn’t great but you did believe what you were singing

        P– You must never start and stop, pick up the pieces 

        S– Restarting caused vocal tension and was uncomfortable

 

David Archuleta

Song: Think of Me – The Phantom of the Opera

Overview: I was so convinced that David was going to sing Any Dream Will Do, but thank goodness I was wrong. He chose to completely change a song that is usually sung by a very female, very soprano women.  But I think he made a great choice.  He made me an Archie believer this week.  I love this song and I love Phantom and I still enjoyed his performance.  He delivered all the pop vocal strength, well placed runs, and sincerity that he always does.

Judges:

        R– Dude it was the bomb, the one to beat

        P– Absolutely perfect on a risk

        S– Pleasant, one of your weaker performances

 

Carly Smithson

Song: Jesus Christ Super Star – from Jesus Christ Super Star

Overview: A big song for a big voice, the only issue with this one is that Carly has to truly let it all hang out.  I’m not sure the key of the song was in the best range for her but the song defiantly fit her.  She rocked it and really went for it. 

Judges:

        R– Definitely Good

        P– So unexpected, loved the chorus

        S– One of my favorite performances of the night

 

David Cook

Song: Music of the Night – The Phantom of the Opera

Overview: This is my favorite song from Phantom so the idea of David Cook singing was exciting to me. I was so not expecting him to say that he grew up singing musical theater; he seems so far removed from that style now.  He had a few issues with the lower pitches but when the song moved up in pitch he performance took flight.  He connects so well with the audience and the camera.  He is the only one who sang a Webber song true to how it would be performed on stage (at least up until his big ending). Not switching it up was the difference; that was the risk, and again I can’t say it enough: He is a star.

Judges:

        R– Molten hot lava hot

        P– So well rounded and have a beautiful instrument

S– Made the most of the song, prefer the grittier side

 

 

So I guess I am just a pessimist by nature; I was expecting the worst on “Webber Night” but I really didn’t have all that much to worry about.  There were weak spots, pitch problems, and forgotten lyrics, but there were some good moments as well. Tomorrow’s bottom two is most certainly going to be comprised of one Ms. Brook White and one Mr. Jason Castro.  If they have a third bottom player in the mix expect Syesha to join them.  The only certainty after this week is that the Davids are very much safe and will battle to the end. It’s starting to get serious! Tune in tomorrow for the results. 

April 22, 2008. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , . American Idol, reality tv, singing. Leave a comment.

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